Charleston Southern was without 14 players, including 10 starters, at No. 3 Florida State on Saturday because of one-game suspensions for an NCAA violation.
Despite the depleted roster, coach Jamey Chadwell said after his team’s 52-8 loss that he “didn’t want it to be a pity party. Don’t feel sorry for us.”
The players were suspended for violating NCAA rules by using financial aid meant for books to purchase other items.
The suspensions among the starters included four senior running backs, four offensive linemen and both safeties. Senior Ben Robinson, a Tallahassee native, was one of the suspended running backs and watched the game from the stands with his family.
Charleston Southern said Friday in a statement that a total of 32 players would serve one-game suspensions. The school said 16 players already have served suspensions over the first two games of the season and two more would serve a suspension later.
Chadwell said they found out Thursday afternoon that more players needed to serve suspensions. They had to make the decision on whether it was going to be this game or when they started the Big South portion of their schedule in two weeks against Monmouth.
Chadwell did say after the game that in their discussions with the NCAA that there shouldn’t be any additional surprises as far as more players needing to sit a game.
Charleston Southern, the seventh-ranked team in FCS, was not likely to challenge Florida State even with all its players. The Buccaneers (1-2) feel behind 28-0 nothing in the first quarter but averted a shutout when Robert Mitchell threw a 57-yard touchdown to Kameron Brown late in the second quarter.
“I am proud of the circumstances of the way our guys competed,” Chadwell said. “We focused on who was there. Those guys got an opportunity against a top team and did some good things. I was proud of the way they competed. Yeah they messed up some things too.”
Republished with permission of the Associated Press.